Exclusive: Utah Delegation's joint response to Obama's Bears Ears monument designation

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  • dw79 North Augusta, SC
    Jan. 25, 2017 3:04 p.m.

    Thank you Utah delegation for supporting the people who will be affeced by the monument. Their voice has been ignored. And paternalistic liberals continue to try to shut them up by giving their own alternative facts. Pro-monument posters quote the SLC Tribune which has always been biased stating more Utahns are for the monument. That is a lie. The people who live there are not all grave robbers and punishing them for the behavior of a few by restricting land use is ridiculous. Most people who live there are honest, work hard despite limited resources, and want to preserve the land, but not through an out of touch burocracy. A smaller monument involving the ruins would be reasonableIf it didn't have a million acres of surrounding usable land as a barrier.

  • FT salt lake city, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 8:14 p.m.

    Do the locals ideas of preservation of the Bears Ears include the thousands of artifacts they stole form Native American sites and later confiscated in federal raids?
    If it's yours or the state of Utahs land please show us a deed!

  • Diligent Dave Logan, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 6:32 p.m.

    Welcome to the Federal colony of Utah, where 2/3's of the land, nearly 125 years after 'statehood' was granted, remain in the clutches of Federal bureaucrats.

    It sounds like Amazon may soon have the drone power. Let's just have them, and the US Air Force bomb all Federal land in Utah with dill seed, and pickle the place. That's what most of these supposed environmentalists seem to want!

  • Fitz Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 4:40 p.m.

    The Bears Ears Monument, along with many other Monuments were created by Obama. These monuments are now part of the National Parks. The Department of Interior and the National Parks have begged for money to cover deferred maintenance for the existing National Marks, and they never get money they need. Yet Obama has established a number of monuments that will not have the money to take care of them.

    If you look at it solely as a budget item, Bears Ears, and all the other monuments recently created (including Clinton's Grand Stair Case Monument), should not have been established. There is not enough manpower or budgets to take care of the earlier Parks, yet alone creating newer monuments.

  • Larry Crutchfield Kanab, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 4:16 p.m.

    There was a typo in my earlier posting - it should have read: When the Monument was designated, there were 106,645 total AUMs. Of these, 77,400 were active AUMs. Today, there are 106,202 total AUMs and 76,957 are active. While no reductions occurred as a result of the Monument's designation, small reductions within limited areas took place under normal BLM procedures to protect riparian resources and to address other issues.

  • Common Sense Guy Richfield, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 12:18 p.m.

    Here are some facts. I would not classify them as " Alternative Facts" This is US Census data.

    April 1, 2010Population Estimate (as of July 1)

    CensusEstimates Base 2010

    Garfield County, Utah
    Base 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016

    @Prometheus Platypus - Orem, UT who said,
    " The Economy has also increased every year since the Staircase."

    It may actually be a fact that the dollars generated in the area are increasing. However, as you can see from the data above it is not helping the area in terms for sustained population growth. In fact, there is a sustained population reduction. Resident have legitimate fears.

    Tourism is great for generating some money seasonally in the Grand Staircase Area. It is too dang cold for too dang long in the winters to support a family on what you can make in a few months in the summer. Last time I ate lunch in the area, I had an Italian Waiter. He did not have a family. When the season was over, he was headed back to Italy. It's not rocket science. Some activities generate employment to sustain families. Others, not so much.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 12:07 p.m.

    @There You Go Again,
    RE: "When have Native Americans ever been ignored without consequence?"...
    I can think of lots of times. But today they get just as much representation as I do. Native Americans get one vote... I get one vote... Based on our Constitution. We all get a vote.

    On reservations native Americans have autonomy. They have their own police, courts, elections, government, etc. I have no representation there (and I shouldn't).

    Outside the reservation they have the same representation I have (one vote per person). That's no more than I get, and no less than I get. Native Americans don't get any less representation than any American Citizen. We all get the same (one vote).

    BTW... that's the same in the West. The Constitution is the same anywhere in the United States (even Utah).

    Native Americans should get no more representation than any other citizen. Just one vote per person.

    Same goes for any group. Just one vote, which counts the same as mine.


    Please prove your claim they get less representation in the West than the East please... Show us some data. We all get one vote.

  • Prometheus Platypus Orem, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 10:38 a.m.

    2 bits used some "Alternative Facts" I'd like to clear up...
    "... look at number of oil wells on BLM land. And who gets paid, and taxes it (not tribes, not State, the feds get the $$)."

    From the Office of Natural Resources Revenue

    States receive 49 percent of the revenues associated with onshore mineral production on Federal public lands within their borders. Alaska is the one exception, which receives a 90 percent share.

    Federal law requires that all monies derived from mineral leasing and production activities on Federal and American Indian lands be collected, properly accounted for, and distributed. For Federal onshore lands, the revenues are generally shared between the states in which the Federal lands are located and the Federal government. In the case of American Indian lands, all monies collected from mineral production are returned to the Indian Tribes or individual Indian mineral lease owners.

  • There You Go Again St George, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 10:28 a.m.

    From the piece...

    a Native American commission that can be ignored without consequence.

    My response...

    When have Native Americans ever been ignored without consequence?

    Surely not in the United States as a whole or the western states in particular.

    It is interesting to note that the UTAH delegation is... suddenly... all in... on making sure Native Americans can't be ignored without consequence.

  • Prometheus Platypus Orem, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 10:27 a.m.

    Thank you Larry Crutchfield for actual facts vs. “Alternative facts” from Utah's representatives.
    The Economy has also increased every year since the Staircase.

    DN Subscriber said: "We should be proud of our Congressional Delegation for their clear description of the problem and means to fix it."

    Wait, proud of doing what? They tried to get as much money from special interests as possible while letting the deadlines fly past. Perhaps if Utah's Party liners who refused to work with the president, going as far as shutting down the national parks. Nope They don't represent Utahn's They represent themselves first, then their party, Then their Donors, and then if there's time left the constituents.

  • Jasna Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 10:26 a.m.

    Please don't use one Native America voice to represent all Native Americans to further your agenda. It's dismissive to a multifacted community. Please research and read more globally, including this: "The Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition has released a new publication, “Bears Ears: A Native Perspective.” This publication highlights the many cultural values of Bears Ears and calls for the protection of the region as a national monument.

    The connection to the land for Native people, the ongoing looting and damage of archaeological and cultural sites, and the lack of knowledge about the spiritual nature of the landscape provide an overwhelming case for the need to protect Bears Ears." This is a coalition of five tribes.

    Additionally, with ongoing issues our districts face - homelessness, education funding, access to healthcare, unhealthy air - I would hope our delegation's primary goals would be to address issues that would improve our collective quality of life instead of witchhunting for anything connected to President Obama--even when it's decisions majority of Utahns supported (like this one, source SL Trib).


  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 10:15 a.m.

    @Larry Crutchfield,
    If we still have the same number of AUM's in Grand Staircase NM as we did before it was a National Monument... why are families in the communities in and around GSNM leaving? Especially families involved in ranching...

    And if we have the same amount of grazing in GSNM as before... how is it more "Preserved" than before?

    I know for a fact there is still oil exploration and oil production and mining going on in the Grand Staircase NM. This may come as a shock to people who assumed making it a NM prohibits these activities. It doesn't. It just means the State gets little from the companies that buy the oil or mineral leases from the Feds. That money goes outside Utah. We get the wells and the pollution in Utah. They get the $$$ in Washington DC.

    What Obama did means the State taxpayers will benefit less from future development there... That money goes to Washington now, and they give us a little back.

    Google "Oil Production on Federal Lands"...
    or "Federal Government Charges Lower Royalties Than States For Oil And Gas Drilling, Taxpayers Lose Out"...
    or "Federal Oil and Gas Royalty and Revenue Reform"...

  • Utahhikerdad TOOELE, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 10:10 a.m.

    The Utah delegation has apparently decided to use "alternative facts" in their decision making on Bears Ears. We, the people, need to inform them of the real ones.

  • 65TossPowerTrap Salmon, ID
    Jan. 24, 2017 10:00 a.m.

    The sore losers who are whining about the creation of this monument are the same people who criticize the sore losers who protest the election of Dee Jay Tee. Funny how it all depends upon who ox is being gored.

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 9:52 a.m.

    We should be proud of our Congressional Delegation for their clear description of the problem and means to fix it.

    Obama's over reaching and destructive policy must not be allowed to stand. Our Native Americans have learned from decades or centuries of experience that the promises of Washington bureaucrats and even written treaties cannot be trusted. Let the locals take back control of this area that is sacred to them, not the environmentalists from urban areas who want to exclude people who actually live in the area.

    Well done, Senators and Congressmen and Congresswoman!

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 9:42 a.m.

    If the Tribes think they control this land now... they have another think coming. The Feds are in control, not the Tribes.

    The government told tribal leaders they would put them in control (to get them to support it). But there's no requirement that the BLM or any federal agency consult them or do their bidding.

    If Indian tribal leaders controlled this land and could do with it what they want... there would be oil wells and casinos all over it. Just look at what they've done on the land they already control.

    I know tribal leaders get rich when they make a deal with oil developers and mining companies (the rest of the tribe not so much). They have already done it on the reservations.

    But the tribe leaders will not be calling the shots in this National Monument like they were promised, I guarantee you.

    Those who think feds preserve land not the State... look at number of oil wells on BLM land. And who gets paid, and taxes it (not tribes, not State, the feds get the $$).

    There will still be oil wells in Bears Ears if feds control it. But State will get nothing.

    Google "Oil and Gas Production in National Monuments"

  • Larry Crutchfield Kanab, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 9:34 a.m.

    I am the public affairs specialist for Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. Here are the facts about grazing on GSENM. When the BLM talks about the number of cattle permitted to graze on public lands, it uses the term “Animal Unit Month” or “AUM,” which is the amount of forage needed to sustain one cow and her calf, one horse, or five sheep or goats for a month. When the Monument was designated, there were 106,202 total AUMs. Of these, 76,957 were active AUMs. Today, there are still 106,202 total AUMs and 76,957 active AUMs on the Monument. The number of active AUMs represents the most AUMs that may be used under ideal conditions - amble rainfall and forage. In contrast to active AUMs, actual use AUM levels—the number of cows put out on allotments each grazing season—vary from year to year as ranchers and the BLM work together to make voluntary use adjustments in response to drought conditions and variability in a rancher’s livestock operations. Actual use levels on the Monument have averaged just over 41,000 AUMs annually, a number driven primarily by precipitation.

  • Steve C. Warren WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 9:22 a.m.

    Re: "Obama ignored the petition of these local Navajo — and the will of thousands of Utahns . . . "

    Absolutely right. Obama ignored thousands of Utahns opposed to the monument while heeding hundreds of thousands of Utahns who supported it.

    Re: "Long after the green settles from Obama's last golf swing . . . "

    Thanks, Utah delegation, for your typically mature, statesmanlike approach.

  • Notmymonument Blanding, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 8:33 a.m.

    I've lived in San Juan County. Bears Ears have always been protected, because we respect the land. Thanks for working to over turn this act. Trump this monument

  • Prometheus Platypus Orem, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 8:29 a.m.

    Awe the Land Snatch and Sell Group is angry that they didn't get to give away land to campaign donors and wealthy partners.

    Obama did America A huge favor by setting aside this land for All American's continued use.

    These folks have never represented the majority of Utahn's they represent Extraction, and greedy companies who suck the natural resources and leave huge messes for the public taxes to clean up, Super Sites, which Utah already has a fair share of, isn't the same as pristine wilderness for generations to come.

    I'd rather my taxes go to preserve land not clean up after conservative sweethearts deals.

    Can I ask what have any of these "(self) representatives" have done to help the economy of that corner of the state?, bringing in sustainable jobs? Of course not they let these small counties die a natural death as the youth leave for the city and farming isn't attracting new blood.

    Thank You Obama!

  • stevo123 slc, ut
    Jan. 24, 2017 7:28 a.m.

    PS I believe MR. Mark Maryboy was the first to represent the area.

  • stevo123 slc, ut
    Jan. 24, 2017 7:26 a.m.

    Thank You Mr. Obama, This from a long time Utahan who welcomes the new monument.

  • Furry1993 Ogden, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 7:23 a.m.

    I'm a Utahn. I totally agree, and am pleased, with the designation of the Bears Ears Monument. I do NOT agree with this tome nor with the Utah delegation which is, as usual, working for the people that own its members (their contributors) and not the people of the state they are supposed to represent.. All the delegation want to do is illicitly grab title to land in which Utah FOREVER disclaimed any interest in its Enabling Act, and turn that land over to people who would make it private and destroy its precious nature. That must not happen.

    Thank you, President Obama, for working to protect this precious land, and set it aside for the benefit of all the people in the United States.

  • Impartial7 DRAPER, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 6:26 a.m.

    Oh please! Utah's congressional delegation standing behind a few Native Americans (most favored Bears Ears) to overturn the designation? These politicians are funded by the extraction businesses and the Koch brothers. They want the designation overturned to be able to sell those lands to their donors.

  • UtahBlueDevil Lehi Ut & Durham, NC
    Jan. 24, 2017 6:07 a.m.

    " The same federal agencies with the same resources and personnel will continue their same work as usual. The people on the ground are provided virtually nothing new to help protect the area they love."

    Funny statement. It 1) states that the designation changed little in how the land will be managed and 2) fails to recognize that those "people on the ground" for he most part are people raised and who live in the region.

    It seems this is a lot of protestation over nothing then - hence - this is a just a load of political..... (you fill in the blank). How about having the Utah delegation that comes together over something real, that will impact the lives of all Utahan's, by improving the quality of life for all..... and stop grand standing on issues that by their own admission, change little.

  • Lone Eagle Aurora, CO
    Jan. 24, 2017 6:05 a.m.

    Great article. It spells out the biggest reason why the current Congress and POTUS should reverse the diktat of BHO.

  • Diligent Dave Logan, UT
    Jan. 24, 2017 2:23 a.m.

    Amen, and Amen.